Thursday 9 April 2020

ALBUM REVIEW: Depravation, “III:Odor Mortis”

By: Thomas Gonzales

Album Type: Full Length 
Date Released: 03/04/2020
Label: Lifeforce Records 

“III:Odor Mortis” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1). Casting Fear
2). Peitschenhieb
3). Misery
4). Beug Dich
5). Sickness
6). Amboss
7). Arrival
8). The Endless Night
9). Nothingness

The Review: 

Münster, Germany extreme music “DIY-ers” Depravation join metal label Lifeforce Records for the release of their 3rd full album, “III:Odor Mortis”. Formed in 2011 Depravation are veterans of over 300 concerts across Europe, and multiple split collaborations spanning the musical stylings of Hardcore to Death Metal. They have sown success in the underground scene by sheer force of will, and the sweat from their collective brow; this relentless pursuit of aggressive song crafting, are translated into what may be their most brutal album to date. 

Free from the constraints of traditional Hardcore Punk and Crust, the framework for their latest release leans heavily on their Blackened Death influences. Full of aggressive blast beats, shrieking screams, and shredding riffs, “Odor Mortis” is a pulse pounding exercise in heavy music composition.  Amidst this slurry of genres, there are elements of Doom Metal and Grindcore, creating a sludgy and noxious soniscape, like moshing your way through a frozen field of viscera.  It is cold, brutal, and nasty.

It’s not all shredding riffs and pounding rhythms however, there are many “striking grooves and eerie melodies” throughout, which help to move the listener along a musical path. With “Sickness”, Depravation slow things down for a (mostly) instrumental track, accented only by a haunting denouncement of hatred spreading like a virus, choking out the light. The interlude is the only real break throughout the album, and it does a great job of setting off the final act. Concluding with pummeling drums, and mournfully distorted guitar parts, it gives way to probably the Blackest song on the record, “Amboss”. “Sickness” really feels like a transitional piece, as the latter part of the album is Blacker and Doom-ier than the more Hardcore start. It’s here that things seem to shift focus with the themes of the album.  Nothingness” closes things out a somber Doom piece embracing the reality that there is no purpose, “nothingness unfolds”. It is bleak, and such a fantastic way to wind things down after taking the listener on such a tumultuous journey.

“I: Praedictvm EP” (2012) & “II: Maledictvm” (2013) are almost a decade in the past, and when you listen to them now, you can hear all the pieces coming together. The elements have carried through each project, and Depravation has acquired various techniques from their collaborators, and blended them into the band you hear today. Touring with Hardcore and Black Metal groups alike, has clearly influenced their song writing and helped them to create something all their own. Pick up “III: Odor Mortis” today from Lifeforce Records, and while you’re at, blast your way through their previous works.

“III: Odor Mortis” is available HERE

Band info: bandcamp || facebook